Hello everyone, I am a first time pool owner. This is our first winter with out pool (details in sig line). We live with a row of 80+ ft live oaks and a few cedar trees about 60ft or so away from the pool. A good chunk of our neighbors have pools (11 pools, 20 homes) and most have trees around them, only two of them have covers and one only has one because it came with pool when he bought the home. We decided to leave a cover off our pool and I would just deal with leaves as they came. Left the pool open all winter.
Here is a general timeline of what happened and outcome.
1) Pool pump was left under normal timer runs until the water temp dropped to 60 degrees. Water chem was checked and balanced until water hit 60 as well. I was told by several owners as well as local pool builder once water is that cold the SWG wont work well and I wont need it.
2) At that point we turned off the SWG and pump only ran 2 hrs at noon and 2 hrs at midnight at a fairly high speed to skim off leaves and circulate the water for the pump.
3) Had a much harsher and windier winter than past years and had a LOT of leaves to deal with. I went after them multiple times a day and still had trouble keeping up. A lot sank before I could get to them.
4) About a month or so ago I noticed there was a lot of really fine silt covering the bottom of the pool. I also saw what I thought was mold growing along the walls and any little depressions in the liner or along seams. I started brushing the pool and running the pump manually for 3 hour cleaning cycles at a pretty high speed.
5) Present day - still lots of fine silt but not as bad. The green/yellow stuff I believe is algae. Its still there and still growing in the same spots. If I brush it is just goes up in a cloud only to return a couple days later. Water is still around 60.
I have not checked chemistry yet, I need to do that ASAP. I just noticed this was getting worse a day or so ago when it got really warm out.
So what do I do? I want to get the green/yellow stuff in check and I want to get rid of this silt. I vacuumed several times to waste and I have been backwashing more often. I even added some of the cellulose fiber to the filter but that didnt go well, I added only two cups worth and the pump stopped flowing about 45 minutes later! Pump was running but I had almost no water coming out the returns. I immediately backwashed and all returned to normal.
I am guessing for the algae I need to "SLAM" it. I do not have a DPD test kit. I do have a nice Taylor kit but it isnt the DPD for chlorine levels so it doesnt go as high as required to read. Do I need to go buy a DPD kit? This one wasnt cheap and I still have a lot of chemical left for testing.
If that takes care of the algae, can I SLAM now while the water is still cold? Any effect on chlorine levels while cold?
How to get rid of this fine silt? I am guessing its all from the leaves and all the wind we have had (we had construction going on across the street).
Thanks for any help. Wife isnt happy with me right now! She told me if we had bought the solid cover we wouldnt be dealing with this. I was trying to save a few thousand dollars after shelling out all the pool build money.